Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Pub Quiz!

I have yet another cultural experience to tuck under my belt (more like wedge, after Christmas).  Chumley and I and a couple friends partook of a pub quiz.  Quizzing is a sport here, but a striking cultural difference is that you can win some major coin doing it in the UK.  No pesty little laws against gambling to worry about.  We sat down with our scorecards and a drink at The Falcon Inn.  The quizzmaster announced the pot would be 96 pounds, so the cash signs rolled over our eyes and we began.

In this incarnation, the quizmaster called a number.  If it appeared on your scorecard, you wrote the answer down to the question that followed.  It was possible you wouldn't have the number, which was especially peevesome if you actually knew the answer to the question being asked.  It was much like trivia bingo, minus the troll doll good luck charms most serious US bingo players swear by.  There were a few highly unattractive men in the vicinity, some with long hair, but I thought Chumley would leave me by the kerb should I attempt to rub their heads for good luck.

It's helpful to be the "token American" on a UK quiz team, as quite a few of the questions have to do with American movies, pop culture, or general knowledge.  I whipped up the answer "Meryl Streep" for at least one question, and that seemed to earn me some street cred. 

I was expecting quite a braniac population in pub quiz, but I needn't have worried about the table behind us.  The question was, "What is the name of the dissident Spanish terrorist organization commonly referred to as the Basque Separatists?"  I couldn't come up with that one, but Dangerous Dave at our table knew the answer.  Once a winner had been announced, we heard the correct answer was the ETA.

"Oh, no!" squealed a ditzy female voice behind us to her male companion.  "You told me it was the Sufferagettes!  Hmmph!"

Chumley and I shared the obligatory eye roll and wondered when this player's head had blown a bubble.  Trying not to laugh too loudly, Chumley muttered that the real Sufferagettes must be spinning in their graves about now.  And that made a nice all-purpose bogus answer for the rest of the evening on the questions where we had no flipping clue.

No one won the pot.  It should probably be donated to some women's voter league to ameliorate the karmic insult.


CambridgeLady said...

Very funny post - though I do despair of "ditzy female" and her ilk!!

I've never taken part in a pub quiz. Sounds good fun and a decent cash prize. Normally they just seem to offer a (cheap) bottle of plonk to the winners.

~kristina said...

Ah good fun. I've got a regular pub quiz group that I gather with every Tuesday. It's been a great way to meet people-and get quickly brought up to speed on 'all things British.'
But, as the frequent token American on the team, it can sometimes be intimidating when I'm expected to know the answer to any 'American' question! :)

ChaChaneen said...

Ha Ha - That was hilarious! Sufferagettes! I am so enjoying your adventures, please keep them coming!

Smocha said...

Please educate me. What the heck IS a pub quiz? I've only been to a pub twice since I've been here ,I saw no quiz.

I do see books about it though. I have no idea :)

Claire said...

Only been to a pub twice? You must go more often. Usually pub quizzes are advertised in the local paper or on a notice board. It's an organized trivia game. I really enjoyed it, and like Kristina said, it would be a good way to meet the locals.

Other than that, you'll have to educate yourself by going. Even if you lose, a few drinks is never a bad idea. (I stick to blackcurrant squash - sharper mind to win the prize with!)